The key to unlocking your school as a ‘Professional Learning community explained
As the public’s expectations of education has risen over the last two decades school leaders and teachers have come under increasing pressure to enhance student achievement and to provide exceptional learning opportunities. Exceptional learning opportunities are best provided in organisations that learn. The notion of Learning Organisations is not new. There has been much writing and research into Learning Organisations and in the education sector, the equivalent – Professional Learning Communities. The early work of people like William Deming, Chris Argyris, Peter Senge and more recently educational thinkers like Michael Fullan, Andy Hargreaves and Dean Fink, all extol the virtues of developing organisations (schools) as Professional Learning Communities. There is little doubt students and staff who are in schools which are authentic Professional Learning Communities develop, grow and learn in more beneficial, dynamic and powerful ways than those who are not. However, what is a Professional Learning Community is a mute point. In our work in schools we see increasingly see two types of very different schools. The irony is that leaders in them are driven by the same set of aspirations and outcomes but choose two divergent ways of achieving them. It comes back to leadership in the end.
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